They Came With Good Intentions. Really?

The European settler came to America to escape oppression, mainly religious, in his country. Unlike what we experience in this country today, many places around the world, especially during the 17th and 18th centuries, prohibit freedom of religion. Even today, there are countries that make demands of their citizenry as to which religion can be practiced, with consequences for those that do not follow the doctrine of the ruling minority. Where you are born and raised determines your religious beliefs.

These settlers of yore came to a newly “discovered” land, not to share what they had and knew, but to conquer, build, and civilize an “uncivilized” land. And to destroy that which needed to be destroyed. They came mostly with good intentions—to lift up the lesser peoples of the land and to live peacefully among those that were already here. All the while, slowly taking the land of the unsuspecting indigenous population, many times by force. And not always slowly, either.

If they could not convince the uncivilized people of the new world to join them peacefully in their pursuit of taming an untamed land and living as they ought to live, then the arriving settlers would subjugate the savages they encountered. If not subjugate, then exterminate.

These mainly white settlers succeeded in their quest. It was as though these new people in a new land arrived with one thing in mind: “If you cannot control, destroy.” Most times they destroyed, even when they controlled.

Good night, Mrs. Jackson, wherever you are.